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Title 26 Part 1 → §1.457-7

Title 26 → Chapter I → Subchapter A → Part 1 → §1.457-7

Electronic Code of Federal Regulations e-CFR

Title 26 Part 1 → §1.457-7

e-CFR data is current as of November 19, 2019

Title 26Chapter ISubchapter APart 1 → §1.457-7


Title 26: Internal Revenue
PART 1—INCOME TAXES (CONTINUED)


§1.457-7   Taxation of Distributions Under Eligible Plans.

(a) General rules for when amounts are included in gross income. The rules for determining when an amount deferred under an eligible plan is includible in the gross income of a participant or beneficiary depend on whether the plan is an eligible governmental plan or an eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity. Paragraph (b) of this section sets forth the rules for an eligible governmental plan. Paragraph (c) of this section sets forth the rules for an eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity.

(b) Amounts included in gross income under an eligible governmental plan—(1) Amounts included in gross income in year paid under an eligible governmental plan. Except as provided in paragraphs (b)(2) and (3) of this section (or in §1.457-10(c) relating to payments to a spouse or former spouse pursuant to a qualified domestic relations order), amounts deferred under an eligible governmental plan are includible in the gross income of a participant or beneficiary for the taxable year in which paid to the participant or beneficiary under the plan.

(2) Rollovers to individual retirement arrangements and other eligible retirement plans. A trustee-to-trustee transfer in accordance with section 401(a)(31) (generally referred to as a direct rollover) from an eligible government plan is not includible in gross income of a participant or beneficiary in the year transferred. In addition, any payment made from an eligible government plan in the form of an eligible rollover distribution (as defined in section 402(c)(4)) is not includible in gross income in the year paid to the extent the payment is transferred to an eligible retirement plan (as defined in section 402(c)(8)(B)) within 60 days, including the transfer to the eligible retirement plan of any property distributed from the eligible governmental plan. For this purpose, the rules of section 402(c)(2) through (7) and (9) apply. Any trustee-to-trustee transfer under this paragraph (b)(2) from an eligible government plan is a distribution that is subject to the distribution requirements of §1.457-6.

(3) Amounts taxable under section 72(p)(1). In accordance with section 72(p), the amount of any loan from an eligible governmental plan to a participant or beneficiary (including any pledge or assignment treated as a loan under section 72(p)(1)(B)) is treated as having been received as a distribution from the plan under section 72(p)(1), except to the extent set forth in section 72(p)(2) (relating to loans that do not exceed a maximum amount and that are repayable in accordance with certain terms) and §1.72(p)-1. Thus, except to the extent a loan satisfies section 72(p)(2), any amount loaned from an eligible governmental plan to a participant or beneficiary (including any pledge or assignment treated as a loan under section 72(p)(1)(B)) is includible in the gross income of the participant or beneficiary for the taxable year in which the loan is made. See generally §1.72(p)-1.

(4) Examples. The provisions of this paragraph (b) are illustrated by the following examples:

Example 1. (i) Facts. Eligible Plan G of a governmental entity permits distribution of benefits in a single sum or in installments of up to 20 years, with such benefits to commence at any date that is after severance from employment (up to the later of severance from employment or the plan's normal retirement age of 65). Effective for participants who have a severance from employment after December 31, 2001, Plan X allows an election—as to both the date on which payments are to begin and the form in which payments are to be made—to be made by the participant at any time that is before the commencement date selected. However, Plan X chooses to require elections to be filed at least 30 days before the commencement date selected in order for Plan X to have enough time to be able to effectuate the election.

(ii) Conclusion. No amounts are included in gross income before actual payments begin. If installment payments begin (and the installment payments are payable over at least 10 years so as not to be eligible rollover distributions), the amount included in gross income for any year is equal to the amount of the installment payment paid during the year.

Example 2. (i) Facts. Same facts as in Example 1, except that the same rules are extended to participants who had a severance from employment before January 1, 2002.

(ii) Conclusion. For all participants (that is, both those who have a severance from employment after December 31, 2001, and those who have a severance from employment before January 1, 2002, including those whose benefit payments have commenced before January 1, 2002), no amounts are included in gross income before actual payments begin. If installment payments begin (and the installment payments are payable over at least 10 years so as not to be eligible rollover distributions), the amount included in gross income for any year is equal to the amount of the installment payment paid during the year.

(c) Amounts included in gross income under an eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity—(1) Amounts included in gross income in year paid or made available under an eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity. Amounts deferred under an eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity are includible in the gross income of a participant or beneficiary for the taxable year in which paid or otherwise made available to the participant or beneficiary under the plan. Thus, amounts deferred under an eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity are includible in the gross income of the participant or beneficiary in the year the amounts are first made available under the terms of the plan, even if the plan has not distributed the amounts deferred. Amounts deferred under an eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity are not considered made available to the participant or beneficiary solely because the participant or beneficiary is permitted to choose among various investments under the plan.

(2) When amounts deferred are considered to be made available under an eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity—(i) General rule. Except as provided in paragraphs (c)(2)(ii) through (iv) of this section, amounts deferred under an eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity are considered made available (and, thus, are includible in the gross income of the participant or beneficiary under this paragraph (c)) at the earliest date, on or after severance from employment, on which the plan allows distributions to commence, but in no event later than the date on which distributions must commence pursuant to section 401(a)(9). For example, in the case of a plan that permits distribution to commence on the date that is 60 days after the close of the plan year in which the participant has a severance from employment with the eligible employer, amounts deferred are considered to be made available on that date. However, distributions deferred in accordance with paragraphs (c)(2)(ii) through (iv) of this section are not considered made available prior to the applicable date under paragraphs (c)(2)(ii) through (iv) of this section. In addition, no portion of a participant or beneficiary's account is treated as made available (and thus currently includible in income) under an eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity merely because the participant or beneficiary under the plan may elect to receive a distribution in any of the following circumstances:

(A) A distribution in the event of an unforeseeable emergency to the extent the distribution is permitted under §1.457-6(c).

(B) A distribution from an account for which the total amount deferred is not in excess of the dollar limit under section 411(a)(11)(A) to the extent the distribution is permitted under §1.457-6(e).

(ii) Initial election to defer commencement of distributions—(A) In general. An eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity may provide a period for making an initial election during which the participant or beneficiary may elect, in accordance with the terms of the plan, to defer the payment of some or all of the amounts deferred to a fixed or determinable future time. The period for making this initial election must expire prior to the first time that any such amounts would be considered made available under the plan under paragraph (c)(2)(i) of this section.

(B) Failure to make initial election to defer commencement of distributions. Generally, if no initial election is made by a participant or beneficiary under this paragraph (c)(2)(ii), then the amounts deferred under an eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity are considered made available and taxable to the participant or beneficiary in accordance with paragraph (c)(2)(i) of this section at the earliest time, on or after severance from employment (but in no event later than the date on which distributions must commence pursuant to section 401(a)(9)), that distribution is permitted to commence under the terms of the plan. However, the plan may provide for a default payment schedule that applies if no election is made. If the plan provides for a default payment schedule, the amounts deferred are includible in the gross income of the participant or beneficiary in the year the amounts deferred are first made available under the terms of the default payment schedule.

(iii) Additional election to defer commencement of distribution. An eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity is permitted to provide that a participant or beneficiary who has made an initial election under paragraph (c)(2)(ii)(A) of this section may make one additional election to defer (but not accelerate) commencement of distributions under the plan before distributions have commenced in accordance with the initial deferral election under paragraph (c)(2)(ii)(A) of this section. Amounts payable to a participant or beneficiary under an eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity are not treated as made available merely because the plan allows the participant to make an additional election under this paragraph (c)(2)(iii). A participant or beneficiary is not precluded from making an additional election to defer commencement of distributions merely because the participant or beneficiary has previously received a distribution under §1.457-6(c) because of an unforeseeable emergency, has received a distribution of smaller amounts under §1.457-6(e), has made (and revoked) other deferral or method of payment elections within the initial election period, or is subject to a default payment schedule under which the commencement of benefits is deferred (for example, until a participant is age 65).

(iv) Election as to method of payment. An eligible plan of a tax-exempt entity may provide that an election as to the method of payment under the plan may be made at any time prior to the time the amounts are distributed in accordance with the participant or beneficiary's initial or additional election to defer commencement of distributions under paragraph (c)(2)(ii) or (iii) of this section. Where no method of payment is elected, the entire amount deferred will be includible in the gross income of the participant or beneficiary when the amounts first become made available in accordance with a participant's initial or additional elections to defer under paragraphs (c)(2)(ii) and (iii) of this section, unless the eligible plan provides for a default method of payment (in which case amounts are considered made available and taxable when paid under the terms of the default payment schedule). A method of payment means a distribution or a series of periodic distributions commencing on a date determined in accordance with paragraph (c)(2)(ii) or (iii) of this section.

(3) Examples. The provisions of this paragraph (c) are illustrated by the following examples:

Example 1. (i) Facts. Eligible Plan X of a tax-exempt entity provides that a participant's total account balance, representing all amounts deferred under the plan, is payable to a participant in a single sum 60 days after severance from employment throughout these examples, unless, during a 30-day period immediately following the severance, the participant elects to receive the single sum payment at a later date (that is not later than the plan's normal retirement age of 65) or elects to receive distribution in 10 annual installments to begin 60 days after severance from employment (or at a later date, if so elected, that is not later than the plan's normal retirement age of 65). On November 13, 2004, K, a calendar year taxpayer, has a severance from employment with the eligible employer. K does not, within the 30-day window period, elect to postpone distributions to a later date or to receive payment in 10 fixed annual installments.

(ii) Conclusion. The single sum payment is payable to K 60 days after the date K has a severance from employment (January 12, 2005), and is includible in the gross income of K in 2005 under section 457(a).

Example 2. (i) Facts. The terms of eligible Plan X are the same as described in Example 1. Participant L participates in eligible Plan X. On November 11, 2003, L has a severance from the employment of the eligible employer. On November 24, 2003, L makes an initial deferral election not to receive the single-sum payment payable 60 days after the severance, and instead elects to receive the amounts in 10 annual installments to begin 60 days after severance from employment.

(ii) Conclusion. No portion of L's account is considered made available in 2003 or 2004 before a payment is made and no amount is includible in the gross income of L until distributions commence. The annual installment payable in 2004 will be includible in L's gross income in 2004.

Example 3. (i) Facts. The facts are the same as in Example 1, except that eligible Plan X also provides that those participants who are receiving distributions in 10 annual installments may, at any time and without restriction, elect to receive a cash out of all remaining installments. Participant M elects to receive a distribution in 10 annual installments commencing in 2004.

(ii) Conclusion. M's total account balance, representing the total of the amounts deferred under the plan, is considered made available and is includible in M's gross income in 2004.

Example 4. (i) Facts. The facts are the same as in Example 3, except that, instead of providing for an unrestricted cashout of remaining payments, the plan provides that participants or beneficiaries who are receiving distributions in 10 annual installments may accelerate the payment of the amount remaining payable to the participant upon the occurrence of an unforeseeable emergency as described in §1.457-6(c)(1) in an amount not exceeding that described in §1.457-6(c)(2).

(ii) Conclusion. No amount is considered made available to participant M on account of M's right to accelerate payments upon the occurrence of an unforeseeable emergency.

Example 5. (i) Facts. Eligible Plan Y of a tax-exempt entity provides that distributions will commence 60 days after a participant's severance from employment unless the participant elects, within a 30-day window period following severance from employment, to defer distributions to a later date (but no later than the year following the calendar year the participant attains age 7012 ). The plan provides that a participant who has elected to defer distributions to a later date may make an election as to form of distribution at any time prior to the 30th day before distributions are to commence.

(ii) Conclusion. No amount is considered made available prior to the date distributions are to commence by reason of a participant's right to defer or make an election as to the form of distribution.

Example 6. (i) Facts. The facts are the same as in Example 1, except that the plan also permits participants who have made an initial election to defer distribution to make one additional deferral election at any time prior to the date distributions are scheduled to commence. Participant N has a severance from employment at age 50. The next day, during the 30-day period provided in the plan, N elects to receive distribution in the form of 10 annual installment payments beginning at age 55. Two weeks later, within the 30-day window period, N makes a new election permitted under the plan to receive 10 annual installment payments beginning at age 60 (instead of age 55). When N is age 59, N elects under the additional deferral election provisions, to defer distributions until age 65.

(ii) Conclusion. In this example, N's election to defer distributions until age 65 is a valid election. The two elections N makes during the 30-day window period are not additional deferral elections described in paragraph (c)(2)(iii) of this section because they are made before the first permissible payout date under the plan. Therefore, the plan is not precluded from allowing N to make the additional deferral election. However, N can make no further election to defer distributions beyond age 65 (or accelerate distribution before age 65) because this additional deferral election can only be made once.

[T.D. 9075, 68 FR 41240, July 11, 2003; 68 FR 51447, Aug. 27, 2003]


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